PDA

View Full Version : Do you like what you are doing? Really?


YellowDogSVC
09-17-2008, 10:46 PM
I'm sure this has been beaten down in the past.

So, how many of you really like what you do? You know, no more Mondays? Are you one of the guys or gals that can't wait to get into your machine or office on Monday or do you dread the M day?

Me, I think I am a little burned out.:blob2: Maybe it's my choice of jobs or the fact that I'm feeling the last few jobs deep in my bones, but I have looked forward to computer games and couch time more than hard work lately. Maybe I just need a vacation. Been a few years!

I just don't know if I like what I do. Some days I have fun. Other's days, I hate the monotony and I don't like the trees and rocks.
Maybe it's the rough terrain more than the trees, or it might be the stress I had earlier this year when I switched machines but something just doesn't feel right and I am asking myself if I like what I do and more importantly, if I enjoy what I do.

BTW, I clear land and chip and grind brush utilizing skids steers, chipper, and other tools.. I recently realized that I created myself a steady job that has turned into a 9-5. Maybe I am not working on my business because I am working in it too much? That's another subject. How to let go of the immediate control and oversee the project vs. doing the project myself. I think that would be a thread by itself.

So, simple question. Do you like what you are doing? Really?

bobcat_ron
09-17-2008, 11:01 PM
Sometimes I really hate my job(s), always getting a phone call in the evening telling me that there is a change of plans, or usually after an hour of getting my trailer and machines ready and tied down, then I find out that they need a different attachment or I need to rent one at the last minute, then I get pissed and bitchy.

But then there is the job(s) that I love it, a good cushy type, show up at 8 am, coffee and donuts waiting courtesy of the client(s) and nice clean Jiffy-John (sh*tter) for when nature calls and a good, tight security system to prevent theft, I love those jobs and I look forward to more of them.

The kind of jobs where I take a before picture and an after shot, and you can really see the difference that job has made to the quality of the land, the demolition jobs, where we all get free reign of whatever we can carry out by hand out of the houses (I got beer from the last demo job) and the excitement of bashing and smashing, and watching the silo's hit the ground and see how far the roof can "pop". If the hours aren't bad, I relish them, if the hours are early and ending late, screw them.

I do get tired of the monotony, especially the endless ditch cleaning, but give me 2 cute 20-something flagger girls and the days get better, give me 2 old sausage festival retiree's and I won't get out of bed.
The monotony can be good for me, I know exactly what's happening the next day and the day after that, and come Friday, I can tell everyone to go to hell, 'cuz I ain't working Saturdays.

Sometimes I do wish I worked in a gravel pit, I just get so tired of driving back and forth to different places and trying to remember all the new faces and names of customers, and having to worry about when they will pay, but if they will pay.

But then I come home, eat dinner with the folks, and hit the couch and go to bed, everyday is a new day, and everyday brings new challenges that I must overcome, so life goes on.............and so will my medication. :laugh:

ksss
09-17-2008, 11:05 PM
I get burned out this time of year as well. Usually when everything is going good I am good, and when there not it does not take much to get me in a bad mood and starts me thinking.

Dirtman2007
09-17-2008, 11:07 PM
Absolutly, I get up every morning 95% of the time eager to go play in the dirt. 5% of the time I Don't as I may have a real pain in the ass task to do that day but it always for out for the good I guess. I usually run the equipment all day, either the excavators or the dozer. Kick back cut on the A/C, radio and move some dirt. Just bought a Sirius Satellite radio that I can use in all the equipment to make some of the long days go by faster. Most of the time I don't even get any dirt on myself:laugh: I pick my own hours, leave for lunch when I'm hungry and go home when I need too. As long as the work gets done that is.

When I'm not working I'm on the computer looking at equipment and on equipment forums. I run off the road looking at equipment and talk about it all the time( girls don't like that :confused:) I really eqjoy doing it and I'm not very good at anything else so I make it work for the best.

Scag48
09-17-2008, 11:08 PM
You know, I'm been having my quips with this the last week or so since I was told I might be getting the big layoff. Right now I'm not really sure what's going to happen, sounds like I might be staying, but who really knows. Lesson? Nothing is ever certain, why worry about it.

I like running equipment, even right now while I've been grade hopping quite a bit I don't mind going to work. I surely wouldn't enjoy being a grade hop long term, but going into winter, a job is a job and I'm not one to complain. That and I'm the new guy on the crew, I can't and won't complain about anything. The only time I ever get pissed off at work is if something gets in the way of me getting perfection out of what I'm doing. I'm supposed to have a laser guiding me with what I'm doing, sometimes the laser doesn't get setup by the time we fire up in the morning so I have to start the day with a more manual way of checking grade. Fine and good for a while in the morning, but if I'm having to do it most of the day, it gets irritating beyond belief. Especially since I'm a perfectionist and I can't get things the way I want at the speed I want them without my laster. So at the end of the day, everything gets done right, but it frustrated me to get it there. Oh well.

I'm really looking forward to next spring. I was really pumped up for this summer but it's been a bust to say the least. Right now I'm just working to get through the winter, more or less. I really wouldn't mind if I got shipped off to another company but I'd like to stay where I'm at. I scored an equipment list today off one of the fuelers, you guys wouldn't believe the amount of stuff we have. (25) PC400's, (3) PC308's, (12) PC200's, (8) PC138's, (7) PC120's, (1) PC600, (1) PC750, (7) Komastu WA 380 loaders, (3) WA 350's, (3) WA 220's, (12) Case 580's, (3) Hitachi 450's, (9) Cat D5G's, (4) Komatsu D37's, (7) Cat D6R LGP's with GPS, (2) D7Rs, (3) D8N's, 1 T, and an L, (5) Volvo A35C haul trucks, not to mention another list of about 20 pieces of compaction equipment. It's disgusting how much iron we have. Needless to say I'd love to stay on with this company.

I would like to eventually work my way back into self employment part time. Buy a mini and a truck and do the O/O deal on the weekends for a while. We'll see what happens.

ksss
09-17-2008, 11:12 PM
That is a lot of iron man.:weightlifter:

bobcat_ron
09-17-2008, 11:17 PM
I think YellowDog's ass is getting sore from his Bobcat seat, his ass misses the nice air ride seat from his Cat 272C.

CAT powered
09-17-2008, 11:18 PM
I work for myself so I'm usually working 6 days of the week and everyone likes to assume that since you move dirt for a living you must want to do that every day so I usually end up doing something like installing drainage at the in-laws house. I guess if it keeps their house from gettin flooded and it keeps em out of my house then it's worth it, but still.

I like what I do, but I don't like the garbage that comes with it. If all I had to do every day was hop in a machine and go all day that would be perfect. It's stupid things like dealing with clients that don't want to pay you or getting a DOT stop or some know-it-all cop trying to make up laws as he pulls you over.

Or a formerly loyal client that hires some dumb@$$ who claims to be an operator that can't keep a dozer going for an hour straight without stopping to either answer nature's call, talk on his cellphone, have a smoke, BS with someone, etc. etc. to do work that you should be doing. PLUS the guy doesn't even own any equipment and he's billing himself out for 45/hr and he's not paying fuel or anything.

Scag48
09-17-2008, 11:35 PM
That is a lot of iron man.:weightlifter:

You're telling me, it's a mind boggling amount. Once spring rolls around, hopefully I'll have one to call my own. For a while, it was the roller, then I got shifted to dozer for a while, then I started grade checking, but run the 8 a little, the 400's a little, a 200 here and there, I could be doing practically anything on any given day, lately it's been grade checking until we get the walls finished. Only have 1 more lift to go and it takes me about 3 days to make complete a lift. After that, we should still have a fair amount of material to get hauled out, should be done with the walls early next week. Then I'll be back on equipment. I bounce around a lot while everyone else is doing the same thing they did the day before, I feel like the odd man out.

J. Peterson Grading
09-17-2008, 11:43 PM
I have those days when I wonder if its worth it. Wether I want to fire all my help and go back to how it used to be, Just me and a skid loader/excavator.

But I like money and its my sole motivation in life.

I need a vacation.

J.

Gravel Rat
09-18-2008, 12:57 AM
It sounds like Yellowdog needs a vacation :laugh:

All it takes is some time off you don't even have to go anywhere just taking a week or two weeks off and doing nothing like watching TV or working around the house etc.

You turn your mind off of work.

As for monotonous it is what I have nothing changes you go to the same place every day do the same thing every day 252 days a year 7.5 hours a day. Some days I don't even want to get out of bed but I have too. Nothing changes I feel like a robot go to work put in time go home. The shift work makes it so you have absolutly no life and it also screws up your sleep schedule. If it wasn't for the people I work with I would have quit long ago. I get cranky and snappy I have almost gotten to the point of just laying it into the managers and tell them to stuff the job up their ***.

I havent snapped yet but I'am suffering the same effects as the other employees and the employee I replaced. I have sciatica pain so I have pin and needles in my leg. I get problems with my guts because you never eat at regular times.

Lots of fun :cry:

ksss
09-18-2008, 01:07 AM
I have those days when I wonder if its worth it. Wether I want to fire all my help and go back to how it used to be, Just me and a skid loader/excavator.

But I like money and its my sole motivation in life.

I need a vacation.

J.

Nicely put.

ccstrebe
09-18-2008, 01:29 AM
Yellowdog,

I had couple thoughts come to my mind. The first one was what BCRon said, should have stuck with the Cat!!:)

Second one I had to think about a little because I have owned my own business for the past 22 yrs. and I love what I do. It wasn't always like that but for the last 14 yrs I can honestly say I have never dreaded a Monday. I had to think for a bit why that was, and the answer I came up with was this.............there is a lot of diversity in what I do and also diversity in my interests.

Between my family, church, my cabinet business, the motocross track, and other misc. interests (Lawnsite.com, motorcycle forums, boating, commodities trading, and property development) there isn't enough time in the day to do all that I need or want to do.

It helps that I have employees (3) which gives me the ability to not have to be at the office every minute of the day (in your case, being in the field) so that if I have to go out to the track or run some errands for a couple hours, I can. By being able to do that it breaks up the day and is not so monotonous.

If your work load permits it sounds like you need someone to relieve you of the monotonous stuff and give you a break to do other things with your time, such as possibly expanding your business in other directions, in other words, diversify.

I know not everyone has the desire or capability to do all the things that I do and be successful but it works for me. My business is not a job to me, it is part of my life, it is what I do. It is like getting up in the morning and taking a shower and brushing your teeth, it's just part of your life, it is what you do, and you like doing it.

You need to put 'the fun' back in your business. I put 'the fun' back into my business 14 years ago by converting all the equipment in my cabinet shop into CNC equipment. I cut my employyees in half when I did that. My employee problems vanished overnight. I will always need at least one highly skilled CNC operator though if I don't want to be stuck in the shop 8hr a day.

IMAGE
09-18-2008, 04:20 AM
I have OCD and ADD, I have a love/hate relationship with everything I do. Sometimes I am burnt out before I start. Thankfully I am in the guards and get totally wasted 1 weekend a month, that helps alot. It never hurts to have a couple on a weekday either...

punt66
09-18-2008, 07:02 AM
Operating destroyed my back and gave me the ultimate burnout. I spent over 2 months running an articutated site truck and know matter how many times i asked or yelled at the guys to keep the road graded it never was. It destroyed my back. After 3 weeks in the hospital and severa tests including an MRI the doc told me i had a spinal cord tumor. (not related to back pain, just a chance find) So i am the ultimate burnout! haha Now i mow lawns. I had enough of all the bone jarring.

punt66
09-18-2008, 07:03 AM
Oh yea, i operated for 12 years. But the last 2 months of the site truck is what did me in. Just to clear that up.

Junior M
09-18-2008, 07:15 AM
Well most everybody knows we build pools... and personally I dont mind it because it is work but it isnt exactly what I want to do. And operating anything tears my back up to, especially running the skid or digging stumps with the mini. I have yet to get around to a job where we dont need to be really productive so I can learn cat controls but I will get it around to it sometime..

YellowDogSVC
09-18-2008, 08:30 AM
Yellowdog,

I had couple thoughts come to my mind. The first one was what BCRon said, should have stuck with the Cat!!:)

Second one I had to think about a little because I have owned my own business for the past 22 yrs. and I love what I do. It wasn't always like that but for the last 14 yrs I can honestly say I have never dreaded a Monday. I had to think for a bit why that was, and the answer I came up with was this.............there is a lot of diversity in what I do and also diversity in my interests.

Between my family, church, my cabinet business, the motocross track, and other misc. interests (Lawnsite.com, motorcycle forums, boating, commodities trading, and property development) there isn't enough time in the day to do all that I need or want to do.

It helps that I have employees (3) which gives me the ability to not have to be at the office every minute of the day (in your case, being in the field) so that if I have to go out to the track or run some errands for a couple hours, I can. By being able to do that it breaks up the day and is not so monotonous.

If your work load permits it sounds like you need someone to relieve you of the monotonous stuff and give you a break to do other things with your time, such as possibly expanding your business in other directions, in other words, diversify.

I know not everyone has the desire or capability to do all the things that I do and be successful but it works for me. My business is not a job to me, it is part of my life, it is what I do. It is like getting up in the morning and taking a shower and brushing your teeth, it's just part of your life, it is what you do, and you like doing it.

You need to put 'the fun' back in your business. I put 'the fun' back into my business 14 years ago by converting all the equipment in my cabinet shop into CNC equipment. I cut my employyees in half when I did that. My employee problems vanished overnight. I will always need at least one highly skilled CNC operator though if I don't want to be stuck in the shop 8hr a day.

Sounds like you have a good balance. I had to integrate my business with my life. Everyone around here "lives Yellowdog" because the business is integrated with the 100 AC. Our land isn't for farming, we have a wildlife exemption so it takes clearing, cleaning, and making it "purdy" for the wildlife. Thus my weekends are generally full as the cedar and rocky country are "never done".

I diversified a few years back when I started doing the grinding and chipping. Before that, I did just about everything except recycling. I cut back so I could focus but occasionally I find myself doing this and that for my customers.
I'd like to have a business where I can occasionally operate the equipment and integrate it into something I like to do. I thought about doing small haul-off jobs with a brush truck and grapple, bringing the brush out here, and grinding at my leisure when I get enough built up. It's amazing how the shreds fix the land..but that's another story. I just didn't want to invest in a grapple truck right now. I get many calls for the small brush piles. Too small to haul the bobcat out and too big to load into the trailer by hand. I hate messing with small piles that are stacked haphazardly when trying to chip so I usually pass.

My first love is the ocean but I'm 200 miles from the coast so boat captain is out for now. I'm going travel a 150 miles today to see a job. I usually don't travel that far for work but I wanted some variety.
And no Ron, my butt isn't sore from the Bobcat. I actually like the hybrid I made much better than the CAT.

ccstrebe
09-18-2008, 09:39 AM
If your first love is the ocean and your 200 miles away then I hate to say it but your in the wrong business. I'm not saying you aren't successful at what you are doing but if your not getting any joy from doing it then for me that would be a tough pill to swallow.

I'm reminded of a saying that goes something like this....."Find a career that you love and you never have to work a day in your life"

jefftb
09-18-2008, 11:28 AM
Guys,

If you dread Mondays or any other day for that matter-then you need to take a break.

Go on vacation, turn the phone off, do something else, go somewhere. Do not wear your "I haven't taken a day off in five years" badge as a symbol of honor, dedication, or whatever you want to call it. Its not good for you and its not good for your business for you not to have time off. :nono:

Trust me, you are missing things, your productivity is down, you have more go backs, you priced a job wrong, you left something back at the yard/shop or something like these occurs frequently.:hammerhead:

If you have the money or even if you think you do not have the money-take TIME OFF.

Your brain needs to rest and be diverted. You will suddenly see things more clearly and have less stress. Your relationships will improve between your employees and your family/significant other. Your work will improve. You may see more business opportunities. You may suddenly see a way to lower your cost of doing business. (Remember its not always about making more, sometimes its better to do it more efficiently)

I was a workaholic for many years but then read an article from another workaholic who had grown his business significantly after he realized that vacations and time off actually helped him see and do things better than constantly grinding day in day out in his business. He was too close to see the trees for the forest.

Gravel Rat
09-18-2008, 01:15 PM
I do laugh when I hear self-employeed people say I can't take a day off I'am too busy. You can take any day off you don't let the customer tell you what to do. There is no need to work Saturday and Sunday unless its weather dependant.

YellowDogSVC
09-18-2008, 05:38 PM
If your first love is the ocean and your 200 miles away then I hate to say it but your in the wrong business. I'm not saying you aren't successful at what you are doing but if your not getting any joy from doing it then for me that would be a tough pill to swallow.

I'm reminded of a saying that goes something like this....."Find a career that you love and you never have to work a day in your life"

I work in what was once a shallow sea. 230 million years ago. Lots of clam and snail fossils so that must be why I live here. Still looking for a shark's tooth in the hills.

YellowDogSVC
09-18-2008, 05:43 PM
Guys,

If you dread Mondays or any other day for that matter-then you need to take a break.

Go on vacation, turn the phone off, do something else, go somewhere. Do not wear your "I haven't taken a day off in five years" badge as a symbol of honor, dedication, or whatever you want to call it. Its not good for you and its not good for your business for you not to have time off. :nono:

Trust me, you are missing things, your productivity is down, you have more go backs, you priced a job wrong, you left something back at the yard/shop or something like these occurs frequently.:hammerhead:

If you have the money or even if you think you do not have the money-take TIME OFF.

Your brain needs to rest and be diverted. You will suddenly see things more clearly and have less stress. Your relationships will improve between your employees and your family/significant other. Your work will improve. You may see more business opportunities. You may suddenly see a way to lower your cost of doing business. (Remember its not always about making more, sometimes its better to do it more efficiently)

I was a workaholic for many years but then read an article from another workaholic who had grown his business significantly after he realized that vacations and time off actually helped him see and do things better than constantly grinding day in day out in his business. He was too close to see the trees for the forest.


The only way I have been able to stay sane without a vacation is to treat rainy days as a vacation. I tend to take care of all of my repairs and maintenance as it comes due even if it means working late into a night. I don't like to procrastinate on that. When I have a rainy day, I get to sleep in, watch a movie or play on the computer. I usually don't do bids in the rain because the clay gets slick so I literally have a day to a week off depending on the weather. Since I end up with enough of those at inopportune times, it's tough to take a legitimate vacation and pay the bills or more importantly stay caught up. I don't want a reputation that "Yellow Dog takes 3 weeks to get a 2 day job done" like some guys have so I hit the jobs as I book em. I've gotten pretty good at estimating the time out I am between customers and just list weather and breakdowns as potential schedule breakers. I keep telling myself I'll get caught up...then my wife gets busy at work. We only vacationed separately once..I went fishing with the guys and I caught hell for 3 years! :)

YellowDogSVC
09-18-2008, 05:46 PM
I do laugh when I hear self-employeed people say I can't take a day off I'am too busy. You can take any day off you don't let the customer tell you what to do. There is no need to work Saturday and Sunday unless its weather dependant.

Agreed. I rarely work weekends. My 21 and 20 year old daughters love living with me because I make weekends family time (minus maintenance time I need at the barn). The 4 year old gets her daddy on the weekends and we have fun.. So much so that even the boyfriends want to hang out here! I chalk that up to not working all weekend like some friends I know. I will do some bids and will do an emergency or preplanned job on occasion but I don't make a habit. Sunday is family day..we fight and argue and work the ranch! Besides, weekends in Texas are for BBQ. ...ummm B-B-Q!

jefftb
09-18-2008, 08:24 PM
The only way I have been able to stay sane without a vacation is to treat rainy days as a vacation. I tend to take care of all of my repairs and maintenance as it comes due even if it means working late into a night. I don't like to procrastinate on that. When I have a rainy day, I get to sleep in, watch a movie or play on the computer. ! :)

The problem is that I'm betting you are just on the edge of sanity on these "days off".

Something tells me if that you were really, really, honest with yourself I bet you think "oohh man, this rain is really going to put me behind" and then you're train rolling into a semi-small planning session on how you can catch up in the days ahead on other things that are sliding. Is that a "vacation"?

I know, I've been there and am there right now. I've got more work to finish between now and mid December (I'm talking just projects that need to be done-dirt pulled back, materials installed, and things tidied up) than I can think about. Its a great problem; but then there are the whole business issues about scenario planning future projects that are just coming up onto the dashboard of life. These for me are construction projects that have to be done in 6 months but require design, re-design, approval, and then actual work. This is on top of the rest of the to do's you know them: regular marketing, equipment research, human issues. Man the list goes on.

My point is that if you are like me it never, ever, ends unless I go somewhere, turn the phone off, and play with my kids or go to dinner with my wife and force myself to say: it will be the same tomorrow. No amount of thought today will change it.

jefftb
09-18-2008, 08:36 PM
Guys its your choice. I'm really trying to change from my workaholic ways.

I can say this with great certainty:

No one, and I mean no one has ever laid on their death bed and said...."gee, you know, I really wish I had worked more."

:rolleyes:

Junior M
09-18-2008, 08:52 PM
This is goin to sound rude as h#ll and I am sure I will get bashed on it.. But someone stated earlier that there soul drive in this business was money. And I think there is more to life than material things. Sure I love having stuff and some extra cash laying around. But that isnt what life is about. I am not sure what life is really about other than living a happy life and doing what you enjoy.. and you will never truly be happy unless you do what you truthfully enjoy and dirt work is what I enjoy, and that is what I do, yeah I know there are goin to be times you have to do stuff you dont enjoy to get to what you really do enjoy.. if that makes any sense, if any of this makes any sense. But that is just my outlook on life and there are multiple reasons I believe this but that is one long story...

So go ahead and start your bashing and calling me to young to understand and all kinds of other crap...

Gravel Rat
09-18-2008, 10:15 PM
Yes there is more to life than having money there is also more to life than working 24-7.

Junior M
09-18-2008, 10:29 PM
Yes there is more to life than having money there is also more to life than working 24-7.
thats what I am saying!! Alot of my friends get on me for what they call working alot (doing bobcat and mini work) and yeah I am sure I do spend a little to much time doing it but I really enjoy it and I like seeing what I can do with a machine...

Scag48
09-18-2008, 11:20 PM
Money can't buy happiness but it sure as hell can rent it for 60 or 70 years.

Ran a dash 7 PC400 today, what a difference. Love the dash 7's! Smooth, way more balanced, lots more power compared to the dash 6's. Awesome hoe. Dug a few footings, hogged some dirt in the 400 with the radio blasting classic rock. Had fun today. Days like today are what make this business fun to be in. Too much sh!t to do and not enough time to get it done. I like the challenge, being strapped all day is the best.

Junior M
09-19-2008, 08:24 AM
Money can't buy happiness but it sure as hell can rent it for 60 or 70 years.

Ran a dash 7 PC400 today, what a difference. Love the dash 7's! Smooth, way more balanced, lots more power compared to the dash 6's. Awesome hoe. Dug a few footings, hogged some dirt in the 400 with the radio blasting classic rock. Had fun today. Days like today are what make this business fun to be in. Too much sh!t to do and not enough time to get it done. I like the challenge, being strapped all day is the best.
I love having to rush and see how fast i can do it and still keep up my quality.

I dont know much about komatsu's larger excavators and I was wondering what is the difference between the dash 6 and dash 7? and why is it called that?

jefftb
09-19-2008, 02:56 PM
dash 6 or dash 7 or dash 3 or dash X generally refers to the engine/machine series-for example, there is a PC78MR-6 and the predecessor was the PC78MR-5, the differences can be several things, i.e. machine horsepower, engine emissions, hydraulic power, etc.

stuvecorp
09-19-2008, 08:50 PM
I would say 90% of the time I like it. This business will grind you up but what else is there? I have looked and really haven't found anything else, unless I find a cutie with loads of money.

YellowDogSVC
09-19-2008, 09:42 PM
Guys its your choice. I'm really trying to change from my workaholic ways.

I can say this with great certainty:

No one, and I mean no one has ever laid on their death bed and said...."gee, you know, I really wish I had worked more."

:rolleyes:

excellent point!

Scag48
09-19-2008, 10:01 PM
I love having to rush and see how fast i can do it and still keep up my quality.

I dont know much about komatsu's larger excavators and I was wondering what is the difference between the dash 6 and dash 7? and why is it called that?

Like Jeff said, the 6 and 7 is the series. Technically, the model number for a dash 7 PC400 would be PC400-7, get it, dash 7. Just another way of typing it. So the number is the series, much like Cat uses letters for their excavator series and your beloved orange and white boat anchors use letters.

The difference between the 400's that I ran was night and day. The dash 7 had only 2,000 less hours on her, so it's not that the dash 6 was haggered beyond belief making it an unfair comparison. Way faster, alot smoother, much more balanced, and the cabs are way more comortable, plus more visbility out the right side of the cab.

Junior M
09-19-2008, 10:04 PM
Like Jeff said, the 6 and 7 is the series. Technically, the model number for a dash 7 PC400 would be PC400-7, get it, dash 7. Just another way of typing it. So the number is the series, much like Cat uses letters for their excavator series and your beloved orange and white boat anchors use letters.

The difference between the 400's that I ran was night and day. The dash 7 had only 2,000 less hours on her, so it's not that the dash 6 was haggered beyond belief making it an unfair comparison. Way faster, alot smoother, much more balanced, and the cabs are way more comortable, plus more visbility out the right side of the cab.
okay.. so the only difference is the engines basically? oh and my beloved white and orange boat anchors use numbers! so what now!! whose dumb now! haha Just messing with you..

Scag48
09-19-2008, 10:25 PM
okay.. so the only difference is the engines basically? oh and my beloved white and orange boat anchors use numbers! so what now!! whose dumb now! haha Just messing with you..

Ah see Jr. you just don't have it quite figured out. I was referring to letters in the series. The numbers on that piece of yard art is the model, the series is a letter. Skid steers is K series now, what are the minis, G series I think it is? Anywho, some other Bobcat nut will chime in. I know more about what's going on with your powered Tonka toy than you do.

There can be a lot of differences between series, not just the motors. Just about anything and everything can change.

Junior M
09-19-2008, 10:30 PM
Ah see Jr. you just don't have it quite figured out. I was referring to letters in the series. The numbers on that piece of yard art is the model, the series is a letter. Skid steers is K series now, what are the minis, G series I think it is? Anywho, some other Bobcat nut will chime in. I know more about what's going on with your powered Tonka toy than you do.

There can be a lot of differences between series, not just the motors. Just about anything and everything can change.
yeah I think they are g-series not totally sure and I misread it. I do that alot, I do alot of crap like that alot and being freakn sick doesnt freakn help any. But yeah, I bet them things are awesome to run!

Scag48
09-19-2008, 10:46 PM
But yeah, I bet them things are awesome to run!

What things? A 400? Yeah they're a blast. Then again, run one, you've run them all. Just bigger, that's all. Gotta pay a attention a little more with a full bucket, more weight can get a little tippy and if you go swinging around full tilt, getting her to stop right where you want is a timed affair. All about seat time though, you never figure it out until you strap yourself in an go. Last night I was up a 20 foot tall spoil pile we dubbed "Mt. Fiji", grabbing material facing the sky at a 3:1 or a little steeper, cocked back and swung over the side was a little sketchy. Just a lot of weight up in the air, you can do practically anything you want with a mini on a slope or a 120 for that matter. When you get up to the 300-400 size machines, you gotta have your brain working a little more when you're on slopes, especially if they're soft like the pile I was sitting on. I wasn't close to level front to back, I was good left to right which is the only reason I stayed where I was. But, I didn't have more than a track's width on each side before the pile dropped off, not much wiggle room if something were to go wrong.

Junior M
09-19-2008, 10:54 PM
What things? A 400? Yeah they're a blast. Then again, run one, you've run them all. Just bigger, that's all. Gotta pay a attention a little more with a full bucket, more weight can get a little tippy and if you go swinging around full tilt, getting her to stop right where you want is a timed affair. All about seat time though, you never figure it out until you strap yourself in an go. Last night I was up a 20 foot tall spoil pile we dubbed "Mt. Fiji", grabbing material facing the sky at a 3:1 or a little steeper, cocked back and swung over the side was a little sketchy. Just a lot of weight up in the air, you can do practically anything you want with a mini on a slope or a 120 for that matter. When you get up to the 300-400 size machines, you gotta have your brain working a little more when you're on slopes, especially if they're soft like the pile I was sitting on. I wasn't close to level front to back, I was good left to right which is the only reason I stayed where I was. But, I didn't have more than a track's width on each side before the pile dropped off, not much wiggle room if something were to go wrong.
Yeah the 400.. But I have yet to run a fullsize trackhoe correctly.. I tried to run a cat 320, But I was already profiicient with deere controls when I tried, and I was like a drunk cross eyed monkey on some kind of drug I was so horrible! I wasnt that bad when I first learned to run an excavator. But it was awesome being on a machine that big with a huge freakn bucket and the radio blasting some Brooks & Dunn throwing brush and stumps around.. except when I was running it it was more like just moving the boom around..

coopers
09-20-2008, 03:12 AM
I am just now reading this thread and I find this interesting. This line of work can get old after a while, I think that is why I chose to do this part time. I struggled for a while trying to figure out what I wanted to do, dirt full time or part time. What I do for full time work right now changes every day and every minute practically (and I absolutely love it) and the dirt work is more of a hobby that earns me money and something fun to do on the side to keep my mind from going too crazy from work.

I've always been one to gravitate toward work that I love and if it makes good money then that is just an added bonus.

Junior M
09-20-2008, 06:50 AM
I am just now reading this thread and I find this interesting. This line of work can get old after a while, I think that is why I chose to do this part time. I struggled for a while trying to figure out what I wanted to do, dirt full time or part time. What I do for full time work right now changes every day and every minute practically (and I absolutely love it) and the dirt work is more of a hobby that earns me money and something fun to do on the side to keep my mind from going too crazy from work.

I've always been one to gravitate toward work that I love and if it makes good money then that is just an added bonus.
I have probably asked you this before, coopers, but what do you do fulltime?

coopers
09-20-2008, 02:32 PM
Check your PM Junior.

Junior M
09-20-2008, 05:42 PM
Check your PM Junior.
I got it...

RockSet N' Grade
09-21-2008, 12:18 AM
I got a love/hate thing goin' on right now. Have got two customers in a row who paid up front, wrote unsolicited reccommendations and were pleased with the work. Then I work at this guys house, laser grade a 51,000 sq. ft back yard - he trenches it and the backfills with his 4 wheeler and I go do it again (gratis) and broke 8 sprinkler heads which he wants me to pay for even though my contract says I am not responsible for sprinkler heads......he keeps calling for his $125 and wants to know if I am willing to "participate" in this added expense. I just don't get it and that kinda stuff takes the fun out of the work......so I love it and hate it all in the same breath......

Scag48
09-21-2008, 12:33 AM
There are ups and downs to everything. As an operator for hire, it's nice not having to worry about keeping the iron busy in the winter and all the associated BS with running a business, after the iron shuts down and I put the GPS away for the day, that's it, I'm done. However, you're only a tool for someone else's success as an employee. There's no reward without any risk. My grandpa always told me not to make anyone else a millionaire any longer than possible. I plan to run with that philosophy.

I like ownership in something. Knowing that you've built something from nothing, more or less the American way, is what's gratifying to me from a business owner standpoint. I've been there, done that, and I'll be back at it eventually. For right now, kicking the tires, lighting the fires, and going to work is doing me just fine.

YellowDogSVC
09-21-2008, 01:27 AM
There are ups and downs to everything. As an operator for hire, it's nice not having to worry about keeping the iron busy in the winter and all the associated BS with running a business, after the iron shuts down and I put the GPS away for the day, that's it, I'm done. However, you're only a tool for someone else's success as an employee. There's no reward without any risk. My grandpa always told me not to make anyone else a millionaire any longer than possible. I plan to run with that philosophy.

I like ownership in something. Knowing that you've built something from nothing, more or less the American way, is what's gratifying to me from a business owner standpoint. I've been there, done that, and I'll be back at it eventually. For right now, kicking the tires, lighting the fires, and going to work is doing me just fine.


If you don't mind being an employee, you can probably retire in better financial shape than your employer if you manage your finances well. Owning a company is a lot of headaches. I worry about everything and when times are good and I'm at least somewhat happy, I worry even more. I have figured out personal finances and know that I will finish the race in a very good position but I have not figured out how not to worry about all the owner stuff. That, to me, takes the joy out of "the job" I've created.

Scag48
09-21-2008, 02:08 AM
You're right, all the advantages of being your own boss are practically a wash once you figure in everything against you. Like I said, self employment to me isn't so much about the money, more of a way to prove to myself that I can make it work.

The union, long term, will be tough for me to walk away from. Working 60 hours a week, the journeymen are taking home right around $2,000 without taking into consideration the benefits package that is about $13.50/hr.. Now, we don't work 60 hour weeks year round and typically have a couple months off in the decent work years. This winter might not be as scary as last winter, but it's too soon to tell. Feast in the summer, famine in the winter, but not a bad living to say the least. You make as much as you would working 12 months a year, but have the winters off, works fine for me as I'm a ski fanatic.

I do however miss my days of getting in a machine that was practically mine (might as well have been), doing what I had to do, and answer only to the end customer. While residential work is small peanuts compared to the stuff I'm doing now, I still miss it a little. Get in a baby, 12 ton excavator, dig a basement, throw some 4" sewer line in, maybe run some conduit for power, call it a day. Now we're running 40+ trucks in and out of a hole, 3-4 400 size excavators, D8's, anywhere from 3-5 different contractors working on the same site at the same time. Get's a little crazy.

YellowDogSVC
09-21-2008, 11:07 AM
Now, we don't work 60 hour weeks year round and typically have a couple months off in the decent work years. This winter might not be as scary as last winter, but it's too soon to tell. Feast in the summer, famine in the winter, but not a bad living to say the least. You make as much as you would working 12 months a year, but have the winters off, works fine for me as I'm a ski fanatic.

.

Ski fanaticism aside, you could fly south for the off months and pick up work. The construction never stops in Texas. We are getting ready to build the Nafta Super Highways and the neighborhoods. Did I mention there are like 20 million people in this state and growing? The cardboard box neighborhoods have popped up everywhere even in our sleepy little town of 6,000. I sit in the center of 12 miles to one 1000 person town and the 6000 person town yet the work never seems to stop. Sure it gets kind of slow but I'm a mom and pop outfit and don't like to travel much or take jobs that don't seem to fit my personality. If I worked for or was a larger outfit, the work is there. Texas is a big place and has a lot of open space and infrastructure is being put in everywhere. Something to think about for folks that get real slow in the winter.

Scag48
09-21-2008, 04:19 PM
To be quite honest, I had thought about going that route. I'm a little leary of serious travel, which that would be, but if I was set up to come down and figure out the lodging situation, I might make a run for it.

stuvecorp
09-21-2008, 04:43 PM
Ski fanaticism aside, you could fly south for the off months and pick up work. The construction never stops in Texas. We are getting ready to build the Nafta Super Highways and the neighborhoods. Did I mention there are like 20 million people in this state and growing? The cardboard box neighborhoods have popped up everywhere even in our sleepy little town of 6,000. I sit in the center of 12 miles to one 1000 person town and the 6000 person town yet the work never seems to stop. Sure it gets kind of slow but I'm a mom and pop outfit and don't like to travel much or take jobs that don't seem to fit my personality. If I worked for or was a larger outfit, the work is there. Texas is a big place and has a lot of open space and infrastructure is being put in everywhere. Something to think about for folks that get real slow in the winter.

You know, I am kinda wondering about doing something like this. You can't really make money plowing and logging is a joke, I would like to keep working to try to earn some cash to further me and the business. Don't know the business rules or regulations that may come in to play. Interesting.

mrusk
09-21-2008, 05:16 PM
You're right, all the advantages of being your own boss are practically a wash once you figure in everything against you. Like I said, self employment to me isn't so much about the money, more of a way to prove to myself that I can make it work.

The union, long term, will be tough for me to walk away from. Working 60 hours a week, the journeymen are taking home right around $2,000 without taking into consideration the benefits package that is about $13.50/hr.. Now, we don't work 60 hour weeks year round and typically have a couple months off in the decent work years. This winter might not be as scary as last winter, but it's too soon to tell. Feast in the summer, famine in the winter, but not a bad living to say the least. You make as much as you would working 12 months a year, but have the winters off, works fine for me as I'm a ski fanatic.

I do however miss my days of getting in a machine that was practically mine (might as well have been), doing what I had to do, and answer only to the end customer. While residential work is small peanuts compared to the stuff I'm doing now, I still miss it a little. Get in a baby, 12 ton excavator, dig a basement, throw some 4" sewer line in, maybe run some conduit for power, call it a day. Now we're running 40+ trucks in and out of a hole, 3-4 400 size excavators, D8's, anywhere from 3-5 different contractors working on the same site at the same time. Get's a little crazy.



Scag the thing is after a few years of having your own business things really take off and then you have no time to dig a sewer line or a foundation yourself.

AWJ Services
09-21-2008, 06:15 PM
I love being self employed.
I also enjoy this more than anything else I have ever done.
Not sure if I will stick it out but I am having a blast.